It happened. After months of rumours about a Twitter clone, Meta has finally released its text-based app, Threads, which is positioned as a Twitter alternative.
Created as a platform for “creators and public figures” with a tagline: “Instagram for your thoughts,” the new app is now live, with the world lining up to create their new accounts.
It’s been reported by Meta’s CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, that ten million users have already signed up for Threads in its first seven hours of being released on global app stores. When a user asked whether it could be bigger than Twitter, Zuckerberg shared on the app: “It'll take some time, but I think there should be a public conversations app with 1 billion+ people on it. Twitter has had the opportunity to do this but hasn't nailed it. Hopefully, we will.”
The debut of Threads adds extra pressure to Twitter’s infamous owner, Elon Musk, who become even more of a controversial figure due to his changes to the platform. Since his takeover, negative user opinion and site glitches threatened the longevity and integrity of the platform, with creators fleeing the app to find a new home for their content.
Recently, Musk made a decision to limit the number of posts users can read on Twitter daily, which seems like the nail in the coffin to many, alienating many loyal users. It’s as if Threads couldn’t have arrived at a better time…
How does it work?
You can easily log in or create an account using your already-existing Instagram account. This is a daunting aspect for Twitter, as it simplifies the process for users to give the app a try.
Meta aims to attract dissatisfied Twitter users who are exploring alternative platforms, offering a more ‘friendly’ approach. However, Instagram has a significant advantage over smaller social media companies such as Bluesky and Spill, due to its extensive user base. This advantage is beneficial on Threads because users can transfer their follower lists from Instagram.
The feed algorithm on Threads operates on an AI-driven discovery approach, similar to hugely popular platforms or features like TikTok and Reels. Consequently, you will come across numerous posts from accounts you don't follow.
Meta presents Threads as a platform for posting updates and engaging in conversations. Users have the option to write posts of up to 500 characters, including photos, links, or short videos to 'encourage positive and productive conversations.’
Here’s a simple breakdown of how Threads compares to Twitter: